Ninja selected as one of Time's 100 most influential people

Twitch streamer and professional gamer Tyler "Ninja" Blevins streams during Ninja Vegas '18 at Esports Arena in Las Vegas. Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Every year, Time names the 100 most influential people in the world, and in 2019, the world of gaming took a front-row spot on the prestigious list.

Superstar Twitch streamer and YouTuber Tyler "Ninja" Blevins, 27, announced Wednesday his excitement after being selected to the list.

Ninja tweeted, "Insanely honored and speechless to be on the @TIME magazine top 100 most influential people in the world. ... love to @TeamJuJu"

Ninja, a Detroit native, made the Time list thanks to a nomination from JuJu Smith-Schuster. The Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver was one of the stars, along with hip-hop artists Drake and Travis Scott, who played Fortnite Battle Royale with Ninja on a night when more than 600,000 people watched.

"I play in the NFL, so you'd think I wouldn't be star-struck much," Smith-Schuster told Time. "But last March, when I -- along with Drake and Travis Scott -- got in a Fortnite game with Ninja for the first time, I was at a complete loss for words. I was among the millions of people all across the world who had been watching Ninja ... play Fortnite, the popular video game, every day for months. He was the unquestioned best in the world at his craft, something I had so much respect for both as an athlete and as a fan. Now, he was single-handedly blending gaming and pop culture.

"I've been a huge video game fanatic my whole life. But people have seen it as childish and a waste of time. Ninja was huge in building up the credibility of esports. At the end of the day, Ninja is an absolute legend, and someone to whom we owe a lot for making gaming what it is today."

Ninja has also appeared in a Super Bowl commercial and had Ellen DeGeneres film a show live during one of his Twitch streams.

--Courtesy of TwinGalaxies.com